Austrians’ loathing for a global significance
Ross’s radio talk was organized to support the fake referendum to retroactively legitimize the Anschluss. It capitalized on the idea of the global presence of Auslandsdeutsche (Germans abroad), a community linked to Austrians by ‘blood’.
Ross’s skepticism of the significance of German communities and colonies that he used to write about in the 1920s (see, for instance, “Rather contra than pro”) gradually faded away. Since 1933 he linked the idea of Germany’s global power with a vision of the deep penetration of foreign countries by the ‘German element’. In his radio talk, the referenced short synopsis and the comments suggest, this view served as a starting point to give his Austrian audience a sense of being an organic part of a Reich that justifiably laid claim to global significance. The presentation of the talk is in accordance with the jargon, well-practiced by then in Nazi language use, and rapidly copied by an Austrian press and radio that had been forced into line, too. Was once the blood of the German émigrés absorbed by the soil of the foreign countries, by now it is awakening in a single magnificent, unifying current that will spread over the world. Ross, as a Vienna-born German and globetrotter, would metonymically guarantee this organic bond between Austrians, Germans, and Auslandsdeutsche.
Colin Ross. Begegnungen mit Deutschen in aller Welt. Colin Roß spricht. Das Kleine Blatt. 1938 Jun 2; 6.
Case: Speaking engagements
1 See the classic account of the Nazi jargon in Victor Klemperer. The language of the Third Reich: LTI - Lingua Tertii Imperii: A philologist’s notebook. New Brunswick, NJ: Athlone Press; 2000 [German original in 1947].
2 For a detailed study on the reorganization of the broadcast company in order to meet the propagandistic requirements see Theodor Venus. “Bis zum Ende gespielt. Zur Geschichte des ‘Reichssenders Wien’ im Dritten Reich”. In: Oliver Rathkolb, Wolfgang Duchkowitsch, Fritz Hausjell, editors. Die veruntreute Wahrheit. Hitlers Propagandisten in Österreich ‘38. Salzburg: Müller; 1988; 108-157.